FAQ answered by Emily Chu: Digital Illustration Instructor at EDAC and Professional Illustrator
1. Why do we have the portfolio requirements we do?
Our portfolio requirements require the students to show us how they perceive the world around them and to capture that onto paper. Observation is just as important as drawing and in the program we train both their eyes and their drawing skills. Many are technical drawings because this allows us to see their skill levels, their patience in creating a drawing, and their attention to detail. It gives us a good idea of how the student thinks, and how successful they will be in the program.
2. Why no anime?
Anime is a style and it is a very niche style. It is rarely appropriate for client based illustration work. We encourage students to observe the world first, develop their drawing skills, and then their unique style will naturally form. As well, illustrators need versatility to adapt their drawing style to different clients’ needs. For example, my editorial illustration for magazines (most of what you see on my website), differ from my comic book style, which also differs from my own personal work.
3. Why do we ask illustration be drawn from real life not photographs?
When drawing from photographs, you are drawing from a flat image. The camera captures a still in time with slight distortion, as well as the photographers bias of focus and composition. To draw from life, you have the challenge to capture the 3D onto 2D, while also making compositional and aesthetic choices yourself. In addition to all of this, you will also challenge your observational skills to really understand the subject you are drawing, capturing a potential moving object into a still-life.
4. What is the difference between a landscape and a perspective drawing?
Everything is perspective drawing. Landscapes are just a small part of perspective drawing. For our portfolio requirements, we require 1 perspective drawing done with rulers of more geometric shapes (cityscape, interior of a building, railway tracks, etc.), and one landscape drawing of more organic forms with implied perspective (mountains, a forest, etc.)